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Poverty: our shame

Written By: - Date published: 12:56 pm, January 31st, 2012 - 89 comments
Categories: poverty - Tags:

We’ve been told about how bad poverty is here, and how bad it is for our future by the excellent Inside New Zealand documentary – but will it take an outside view to wake us from our slumber?

If so then Christians Against Poverty‘s John Kirkby is willing to provide it for us:

[…] he was always careful not to label something “the worst”.

“But […] Sixty seven per cent of our clients can’t feed their kids. One third of them have contemplated suicide. It was their level of poverty … this is the 21st century.”

[…]

“I have been shocked by what I have seen in your country. Children without shoes whose parents cannot find them breakfast. You have some massive, massive problems.”

Child poverty is a “massive, massive problem” for us.  It will cost us a lot more in the long run than the upfront cost of fixing it.  The hospital costs of third-world diseases, the lost opportunities of ill-educated children, the increased dole and prison rates, the lives left mired in drugs and alcohol as they wallow in a lack of hope – we’re not constructing a utopic Brighter FutureTM here.

The Inside NZ doc proposals are not out of reach, just out of National’s priorities.  A focus on proper standard Housing including rental WoFs.  Fully funded children’s health with proper free treatment, with an aim of prevention and accessibility.  Benefits for those with children funded at an appropriate level to meet their needs.  Free school lunches to ensure every kids gets one good meal each day.

Most people would be happy to pay a little more to ensure these happened and our next generation can reach its potential.  The lunch cost could be taken from the benefits of those who will no longer be providing lunches.  Rental WoFs don’t cost the Government, just slum landlords as they bring their places up to scratch.  Prevention always ends up lowering health costs in the medium or long term.

It’s not brain science; it’s just something we need to do.

89 comments on “Poverty: our shame”

  1. Lanthanide 1

    If we could have taken the tax rate cut to the top bracket that Key and his cronies put through, and directed all of that money to relieve poverty conditions throughout the country, we would have gotten a hugely better return on investment than what we have so far – which is that the tax “switch” is definitely not revenue neutral and has cost $1.1B so far.

  2. Interestingly Jazmine Heka, the 15 year old Whangarei young woman who is organising a petition against child poverty was on Radio New Zealand this morning.

    If anyone wants to sign her petition it can be downloaded from here

    I think every good lefty should download it and get a few signatures.  Let Bennett explain to Jazmine why the Government cannot do something about this terrible problem. 

  3. muzza 3

    When was the last time we had an RBNZ audit?

  4. Olwyn 4

    While I think that school lunches will help, the roots of poverty have grown deep in a very short space of time, and are hard to get a handle on. Furthermore, I do not trust the National Government not to use poverty as a lever to further infantilise and bully people who are already in despair and very close to being disenfranchised.

    Housing plays a big part in poverty, and WOF’s will not address the fact that rental housing is very expensive in relation to both wages and benefits in NZ. This problem is exacerbated by the fact that most of our rental accommodation is made up of privately owned nest-eggs that cannot offer renters security of tenure – something the Jackal has written about recently: http://thejackalman.blogspot.com/2012/01/when-house-is-not-your-home.html

    This difficulty is further exacerbated by the fact that middle class people too often have static wages with which they just get by. Their advantage is that they own property, which is effectively their wealth, and they are reassured by, and defensive of, the inflated housing prices that add to the despair of those who are shut out. And any attempt to seriously address poverty seems to threaten the card house on which this depends. Did you look at some of the savage responses to John Kirkby’s piece?

    The only solution I can think of (apart from piece-meal ones like the lunches) is to form a realistic definition of what is needed for a modestly flourishing life, similar to the one that was included in the Australian Federation Document (which I cannot find to link but have read), to be taken into account with regard to policy, as inflation is presently.

    • I agree with you Olwyn and this is a debate the Labour Party is going to have to conduct but the problem is the political cost of increasing benefits.  I accept this is the only way to get people out of poverty but the electoral response is not good.  Part of the reason for the last election result is middle class votors going for the soft green party because Labour was going to give away all of their tax money to “bludgers”.
       
      The benefit of school lunches IMHO is that it is or should be so hard to oppose.  What idiot would refuse to fund hungry children?
       
      But I accept there needs to be a large debate on the subject preferrably with the types of “Waitakere Man” involved so that some education of the electorate can occur.

      • Olwyn 4.1.1

        I do not remember the Greens opposing WFF being extended to beneficiaries, and Labour very likely lost more votes to non-voters than to the Greens. Moreover, working with a definition as to what is needed for a modestly flourishing life has broader implications than who gets or does not get WFF, which bridges the gap between low pay and high costs, and is for the most part a subsidy to both landlords and employers. People need living wages and stable, affordable housing if they are to build modestly flourishing lives. It is time we started working out how to make this possible under the present conditions. It is unacceptable to continuously wail about child poverty while being too scared to face up to the social conditions that produce it.

      • belladonna 4.1.2

        Labour lost the election because beneficiaries and low income workers didnt see anything worth voting for so didnt bother.

  5. insider 5

    “Rental WoFs don’t cost the Government, just slum landlords as they bring their places up to scratch.”

    How many Housing NZ houses would pass? Why restrict it to renters? House buyers should have the same entitlement surely?

    It’s an easy thing to say ‘let’s do it’, but Labour put a similar issue – the home efficiency rating scheme – on the backburner a number of years ago because it was basically undoable for existing houses. Look at what has happened in terms of getting assessors into Chch homes for an idea of the scale of the workload you’d be creating.

    • felix 5.1

      “Why restrict it to renters? House buyers should have the same entitlement surely?”

      What do you mean by “the same”? You mean purely for the sake of consistency, tenants should enjoy all “the same” benefits of home ownership as home owners do?

      Careful with that axe, Eugene.

      • insider 5.1.1

        If a housing WOF is essential before renting a property why not make it essential before selling a property? Looks like it is an attempt to ‘protect’ renters. Why do renters need more protection than buyers?

        • felix 5.1.1.1

          Why do renters need to rent a home?

          • insider 5.1.1.1.1

            preference?

            • Colonial Viper 5.1.1.1.1.1

              Of course insider, people choose to be poor after all. Particularly in Auckland where housing is just so affordable.

              • insider

                So you are saying people who rent are by definition poor?

                • McFlock

                  Those fecking venn diagrams again – just because a majority of poor people rent does not mean a majority of renters are poor.

            • felix 5.1.1.1.1.2

              “preference?”

              Sometimes, sure.

              You’re really trying hard to miss the bleeding obvious though.

              Would you like to explore a meaningless tangent about how we’re all rational actors on a level playing field, freely entering into contracts in equal-power relationships with other individuals, or would you like to have another crack at it?

              • insider

                The point I was raising is that it’s very easy to sloganeer about how these things must be done
                but we have practical experience in NZ of actually how hard it is. And it’s not just going to cost the landlord.

                If the rental WoF is to protect some people from unscrupulous landlords, does that mean it will only apply to some rented homes? Who decides and how?

                • felix

                  You fail right out of the blocks when you try to pretend that the relationship between a tenant and an owner is somehow equivalent to that between a vendor and a buyer.

                  Makes it look like you’re just fucking around.

                  • insider

                    Where exactly did I do that? You seem to be suffering from an overactive imagination

                    • felix

                      Right here. Gee you guys have short memories. Are you looking after a whole lot of handles at once or something?

                    • insider

                      You are skewing the thread context, which was about the practicality of a building WoF to prevent health issues. Asking a question as to why you’d restrict it to one select but incredibly diverse group but not extending it to others who may be living in the same or worse conditions is not pretending some power relationship equivalence between the two. You’re the one trying to present renters as some homogenous group of poverty vicitims.

                      Doesn’t it make as much sense to protect the relatively poor couple with kids who choose and manage to buy some low quality draught hole as it does the relatively poor who rent similar? If you want to prtoect people, base it on need not on who owns the house.

                    • McFlock

                      Doesn’t it make as much sense to protect the relatively poor couple with kids who choose and manage to buy some low quality draught hole as it does the relatively poor who rent similar? If you want to prtoect people, base it on need not on who owns the house.

                      No, because maybe they wanted to buy a hovel to build it up. Or knock it down after a couple of years. Or, worst case scenario, sell it on a few months later after a new coat of paint or similarly minor improvements. Remember, we’re talking about people who can realistically borrow and service $100000 or more. That gives a lot of discretion as to whether they buy now or wait a while and rent. Ergo they are not in as vulnerable a position as someone living from week to week who might get trapped in a shithole, and not able to move out because they can’t pay the bond for the new place up front. 
                         
                      As long as the purchaser knows what they are buying, that is fine. But someone renting bottom of the barrel accommodation is not likely to have the readies available for an engineer’s report and LIM.
                         

                    • felix

                      Oh ffs, the reason it’s different is because it’s your house.

                      Get a fucking grip, insider.

                  • Jassen

                    I’ll back up the original question to Felix as in the normal approach on these blogs, attack the other who disagrees, the question was indeed not answered.

                    Who has the authority and how are you going to distinguish and seperate which rental accomodations will be subjected to such WOF’s? Will there be a appeal process for owners who disagree with their failure of said WOF? Will the WOF stand for anything when the renter then onsells the house after a period of time? Does having the WOF on the house add any value to the sale when the owner is tired of renting out his property?

                    All valid questions that anyone as a homeowner and also landlord would like to know.

                    Whilst on the topic though, why stop at the properties having a WOF. How about extending the courtesy to the homeowner on being allowed to fully background check their prospective tenants. Police records, CYFs involvement, etc etc. That would also help the landlords.

                    A bit of give and take and everyone is happy.

                    • McFlock

                      Who has the authority and how are you going to distinguish and seperate which rental accomodations will be subjected to such WOF’s? 
                        
                      To be determined as part of the legislative process.
                        
                      Will there be a appeal process for owners who disagree with their failure of said WOF? 
                        
                      To be determined as part of the legislative process.
                       
                      Will the WOF stand for anything when the renter then onsells the house after a period of time?    

                      At a guess, it would stand for the principle that a purchaser can rent the dwelling as is, without additional capital expenditure beyond the purchase price.
                       
                      Does having the WOF on the house add any value to the sale when the owner is tired of renting out his property?   
                        
                      Possibly, if it’s being sold as a rental property. I’d actually suggest that it’s more likely the absence of a wof that would reduce the price, rather than the presence being an increase. There might be a ngelible factor, equivalent to a coat of paint, that an agent could boost – certified habitable, sort of thing.
                      All valid questions that anyone as a homeowner and also landlord would like to know.
                         
                      Especially those people who want to shoot it down before it is put to the legislative process. God forbid there might be actual public consultation about the idea that NZ shouldn’t have slums.
                       

        • McFlock 5.1.1.2

          Not a bad idea – what I would say though is that a lot of buyers intentionally purchase “doer-uppers”, put in some decent work (heatpumps, new roof, insulation, that sort of thing) with a view to making a capital gain. Indeed it’s a great way for first hme buyers to build their way up.
            
          Renters are in a different boat – if there is a structural issue, then it’s the landlord’s problem to improve the house because it’s the landlord who makes the capital gain. 
           
          So the difference between renters and buyers is that really buyers just need to be aware of issues in negotiating a fair price, whereas renters are often forced to take what they are offered without the ability, in a worst case scenario, to improve it themselves.

    • Colonial Viper 5.2

      Look at what has happened in terms of getting assessors into Chch homes for an idea of the scale of the workload you’d be creating.

      Since our economy is looking for added value jobs I presume you mean this point to be a good thing.

      • King Kong 5.2.1

        Sounds like you are advocating “work for dole” type schemes.

        Congratulations.

        • felix 5.2.1.1

          Wow, you guys really can’t stomach the idea of people being paid proper wages for a job of work, eh?

        • One Anonymous Bloke 5.2.1.2

          “Work for dole” in the high wage economy brighter future that closes the gaps with Australia and gets tough on crime and sells shares to Mom and Pops and apple pie and crumbly candy bars and who could believe that a cretin such as this could become Minister of Tourism?

          With sincere apologies to Peter Fluck and Roger Law.

        • Colonial Viper 5.2.1.3

          “work for Dole” = Employers getting free workers = Employers bludging off government support.

      • insider 5.2.2

        Given we had to import many foreigners to do it, I’m not sure you’d be too happy about the profit repatriation involved.

        • Draco T Bastard 5.2.2.1

          No we didn’t, we just needed to pay enough and accept people who could do the job even if they didn’t have the exact ‘qualification’.

  6. aerobubble 7

    Lawns have more rights of free expression than protestors. Councils ‘re-develop’ the civic square and then argue that the huge cost of up keep is now a reason to ban protests! But wait its worse, the PM calls everyone who is worried about capital independence from foriegn investors is a racist. So why would it be any surprise that children get the short end straw. Big money rules our councils and our government, and if they need money to justify shuting down protesters in order to keep indebted property developers solvent at the cost of our kids then so be it.

  7. just saying 8

    Shearer has said Labour is revisiting the policy extending WFF for beneficiaries, as well as the capital gains tax, and will definitely be changing policy to add a few more hoops for beneficiaries to jump through (no word on increasing benefits to livable levels, and I think we can take it as read that this latest swing to the right won’t accommodate that). He says beneficiaries need more “responsibilities” so that’s good – get that boot into the poorest and most powerless, make miserable lives harder…..

    Meanwhile we have Te Mana, and the Greens still with a committment to helping those most in need. And neither have yet suggested bullying benes as official policy for winning votes.

  8. just saying 9

    Edit function is taking me to nowhere land. The first part of the above was reported in the Listener. I’ll look out a link if anyone is interested.

  9. Carol 10

    My concern, as a renter, about rental WOFs is that, if some landlords are forced to upgrade their rental properties, the cost of renting will inflate.

    • DavidC 10.1

      OMG! you mean like the cost of a capital gains tax?

      • Draco T Bastard 10.1.1

        CGT will not increase the cost of houses as the price is set by the market. Same goes for the WOF on rental properties.

        • Jassen 10.1.1.1

          In theory land that may be true.

          • McFlock 10.1.1.1.1

            Until we try it, everything is theory-land.

          • One Anonymous Bloke 10.1.1.1.2

            What do you mean? Do you mean that in the land where a hypothesis is tested against evidence and seems to fit, it becomes a theory, or do you mean you don’t understand what a theory is?

  10. indiana 11

    Whilst I agree NZ has poor people, I find it difficult to comprehend that they are in poverty. To me poverty is when you do not have access to shelter, food, health care and state welfare. The comments from the Samoan Prime Minister probably best sum up it:

    Tuilaepa says that some Samoans think that not having car, a TV or a European house is poverty.
    http://www.stuff.co.nz/world/6305942/Samoa-s-poor-are-lazy-PM

    • One Anonymous Bloke 11.1

      You are missing the point: relative income levels are more important that absolute measures of poverty.
      In the developed world, there is no relationship between GDP and negative social outcomes. There is however a strong correlation between income inequality and negative social outcomes. In other words, (and again, for developed countries) it is the differences within countries that matter, not the differences <between them.

      Citations.

      • rosy 11.1.1

        “There is however a strong correlation between income inequality and negative social outcomes.

        And on this point, even Davos attendees and the IMF agree increased income inequality, i.e. increasing wealth at one end and increasing relative, and actual poverty at the other, and a shrinking middle-class. is happening and is a bad thing, and that an overhaul in capitalism may be required to improve the situation.

        But some commenters on this site continue to simply blame the victim and support policies that increase poverty and the people that benefit from these policies. I’d be interested to see these supporters argue how increasing poverty is a good thing – not off-topic criticisms of individuals who have become unemployed or who have ‘habits’ that will see them remain poor in the current economic and political climate, or argue that is doesn’t exist, but to argue that in theory increases in inequality is moral and fair.

        Because increasing inequality and resultant poverty is happening, and if you support the current economic and social policies you believe that increasing inequality (even if only as an economic side-effect) is more important that decreasing inequality. And people are suffering out there – kids are not being fed, they’re are getting ill and dying from diseases of poverty that have no place in a developed nation.

    • Colonial Viper 11.2

      Fuck off, poverty is when you cannot participate meaningfully in civil society and are judged societally by others because of severe money and resource limitations.

      Quite different definition than your developing world subsistence living style of thinking.

      • Olwyn 11.2.1

        I would add CV, that there is a difference between “old” poverty and poverty that enters into a society that previously enjoyed something approaching equality. To begin with, everything from food prices to rents run on the idea that most people can afford them, when in fact a significantly-sized group are falling behind and cannot. Putting to one side the six million dollar mansions, NZ retains a rough equality of costs alongside a growing inequality of means, with few escape hatches beyond tickets to Australia, lotto wins and crime. Imagine a scenario in which the poor in NZ came to think that they could ease their burden by living in caravan parks. It would not be long before the more imaginative young middle class came to see a couple of years in one of the less decrepit caravan parks as the way to save for their first home, which would soon be followed by “entrepreneurs” pushing the price of caravans beyond the reach of the poor who initially sought refuge there. Something like this sort of squeeze is on people already, but at a level that is a rung or two higher on the ladder.

      • Jassen 11.2.2

        So those poor people we saw on TV before the election. You remember the ones. The ones that were all smoking, had a 42″ TV on the table in the background, had boxes of biscuits on the table but were claiming they couldn’t afford milk.

        These people are poor? Which part of your definition do they fall into?

        • One Anonymous Bloke 11.2.2.1

          What is it with you people and anecdotes? Do you think your personal opinion about one case you saw on the Tv is the equivalent of actually addressing an issue or something? Sad.

          What is it about “relative income inequality” that you don’t understand? What don’t you get about it?

          For me it was the mechanism behind it – why is it such a big deal? The answer turns out to have to do with feelings of self worth, but the fact is if you want to understand it you’ll have to look at the evidence. You’re not going to find the answers in a blog comment, although you can certainly find where to start.

          http://www.equalitytrust.org.uk/why/evidence

          It would be really refreshing if we could have a conversation about the merits of socialist versus conservative approaches to this, as opposed to denying the problem with a side order of red herring.

          • Jassen 11.2.2.1.1

            I agree with your wider view on things, but using people like that as posters for a cause as was done by that program, will obviously open it up to scrutiny. That was such a bad example of “poor” people that it was completely laughable.

            Socialism has it’s place as does conservative approaches to these issues. It is impossible that they do not co-exist.

            One of the issues with how we measure the metrics of income equality in this country I believe, is that we actually count the benefits received as income. This will skew the metrics. If every person that added to the overall result of the calcualtions involved with determining income equality actualluy earned an income, I would be more inclined to say we have an issue.

            • McFlock 11.2.2.1.1.1

              One of the issues with how we measure the metrics of income equality in this country I believe, is that we actually count the benefits received as income. This will skew the metrics. If every person that added to the overall result of the calcualtions involved with determining income equality actualluy earned an income, I would be more inclined to say we have an issue.
                 
                 
              sooooo – if we didn’t include the benefits received by poor people as income, you’d be more inclined to say we have a poverty problem because more people would be more poor? Thankyou for that contribution. Personally, I think you’d just say something along the lines of “oooo but there are poor people who apparently own TVs, so obviously we pay them enough in benefits, which aren’t counted in the poverty ‘metrics'”.
               
              Meanwhile, children die.

            • One Anonymous Bloke 11.2.2.1.1.2

              So you’re arguing that the problem goes away if you measure it differently.

              Not that you have, or anything, but hey it was a good response that means you can keep on denying the issue. Callous lowlife much?

              • Jassen

                Fuck really? Again with the name slinging. That is really your answer to everything in this blog.

                McFlock give me some stats on how many kids die because they are poor? Not the line, they have more chance of dieing, but how many kids death in this country are actually attributed to being poor.

                Again One Anonymous bloke, if you knew me you would know how far from the truth that is. But hey, I suppose this is “YOUR” blog so you can be as obnoxious and venomous as you want.

          • Jassen 11.2.2.1.2

            “What is it with you people and anecdotes? Do you think your personal opinion about one case you saw on the Tv is the equivalent of actually addressing an issue or something? Sad.”

            I must address this comment seperately however.

            Can this not be said for the same in reverse.

            When one flaw in the benefit system is found and repaired or closed, that will maybe affect a handful of people clearly rorting the system because of the loophole, then how is it the left are allowed to claim that as bene bashing.

            No matter which side of the political spectrum you sit, it works both ways, and the answer is not trying to understand what your opposition “can’t” see, but try and understand what the opposition “can” see and then compare to your beliefs. Debating two sides to an argument is actually quite fun when it doesn’t spiral downhill into a name calling “I am holier than thou” match.

            Nobody will agree on everything and the fact that you voted for and support a party that less than 30% of the population voted for, shouldn’t stop you from having good discussions on many issues.

            • McFlock 11.2.2.1.2.1

              Bullshit. Bene-bashing is when people cry foul (frequently undeserved) about a few people and by doing so tar thousands of others.
                  
              What is the opposite of that?
               
              Making life better for a few people in genuine need and therefore making it at a level that’s almost comfortable for thousands of others?

            • One Anonymous Bloke 11.2.2.1.2.2

              What does that even mean? Obviously my point sailed right over your head, so I’ll spell it out: the plural of anecdote is not “evidence”. Debating two sides of an argument is a waste of time when only one side actually has one.

              • Jassen

                And being obnoxious and arrogant going into said arguments leads you to the false belief that you are the only one with an argument and everyone else is wrong.

                Well I’ll leave you to your world as obviously no one in here is open to general discussion anymore. But feel free being the minority. I am sure with the realization of the general population that more and more of the socialites like you are ruining what was once a good party, more and more will leave and your diminishing percentages in the polls will diminish even more.

                But please enjoy the ride anyway.

                • One Anonymous Bloke

                  Coming from someone who thinks he can judge whether I still have a right to speak, I’d say that makes you a hypocrite of the highest order, but whatever keeps you from actually confronting the issue, eh.

        • McFlock 11.2.2.2

          Not my definition. 
              
          It’s the fantasy you construct so you can ignore the fact that deprived kids in NZ are five times more likely to die from medical conditions than children in well–off families.
              
          Feel free to talk 42″ all you want – kids are dying at a rate far higher than need be, we can prevent it, we know how to prevent it, but people like you are happy to let it happen.
             
          Not worth the spit.

          • Jassen 11.2.2.2.1

            Again a really bad assumption. I am not in favour of letting kids die. But the issue isn’t just money alone. It is also extremely poor parenting amongst many other things.

            • One Anonymous Bloke 11.2.2.2.1.1

              Baby steps, and poor parenting is another symptom of….? Come on, the evidence was in front of your eyes only today…think hard…

            • McFlock 11.2.2.2.1.2

              But poverty helps. Things like overcrowding, heating, water restrictions often have nothing to do with “poor parenting”.
               

        • Olwyn 11.2.2.3

          Consumer junk, like TVs and so on, are the flotsam and jetsam of modern societies, not signs of wealth. The people in the TV show were probably given their TV by relatives fleeing to Australia.

        • Frank Macskasy 11.2.2.4

          Jassen, you must’ve loved watching that. It probably reinforced every prejudice you hold dear.

          For all you know, the TV was an old set picked up from a recycling depot; the biscuits were from a Foodbank; and smoking was their drug-of-choice to calm their nerves. (Smoking is very common amongst mental health patients, for precisely that reason.)

          Perish the thought that you might consider that there is more to peoples’ situation than a ten second sight-bite on your TV screen.

          Because without your prejudices, you’d actually have to think about the situation instead of just dismissing it as a “blame game”.

          • Jassen 11.2.2.4.1

            Again, wrong end of the stick.

            That particular poster family were held out in front of the nation as a shining example of how poor people live. That is just not true. It was a realy bad example. I have seen poor people, but they did not complain about not having milk when in fact having enough money to spend on cigs. Drug of choice or not, it is the wrong choice. The ones I care about are the real strugglers. They were even upset at being put in the same basket as those losers on TV.

            I do and always have done lots of volunteer work, so all of you on here who assume otherwise are just acting like spoilt brats. From my vantage point, the money isn’t the only issue. There are deeper issues that need to be addressed.

            Flame all you like, I don’t really care. It is my opinion and one I firmly believe in.

            • McFlock 11.2.2.4.1.1

              Who? Source? youtube clip? For all I know you saw a broken k9 and called it a “42” tv”.

            • One Anonymous Bloke 11.2.2.4.1.2

              Deeper issues? Like life expectancy, education outcomes, incarceration rates, social mobility, trust, violence, teenage births and mental health?

              Or were you referring to other mysterious metrics that you haven’t actually measured either, but which just happen to give you a gut feeling that tells you the problem doesn’t really exist?

    • Indiana,

      Whilst I agree NZ has poor people, I find it difficult to comprehend that they are in poverty. To me poverty is when you do not have access to shelter, food, health care and state welfare.

      Having “access” to shelter, food, health care and state welfare is not the same as having sufficient to get out of poverty.

      You can have “access” – but if it’s a crippling small amount; which keeps you trapped in poverty, focusing your energy simply to survive; then that is poverty.

      Until you’ve experienced poverty yourself, it is a meaningless concept – something you view, disconnected from a distance. Like looking at Pluto through a telescope.

      • indiana 11.3.1

        No point trying to prove to you that I have experienced poverty, as you will not believe me based on the comment I posted on this thread.

        My point is that NZ has many avenues of assistance to help people become richer no matter what level of poorness you may begin with. Some migrants have come from countries where they had no access to state assistance like they have in NZ. In fact that state assistance can be considered a luxury by them and further enhance why they think NZ is such a great place to live.

        That “crippling small amount” you speak of still puts migrants ahead of born and raised Kiwi’s – why is that? Why is it that a refugee from a war torn country is off state assistance within 2 years, when a born and raised Kiwi still holds their hand out for more? Why is it that the migrants to NZ, who came here with little to nothing, start up small businesses such a fruit shops, dairys, take away shops and drive taxis, but NZ born Kiwi’s but cry out that they are in “poverty”?

        NZ’s state assistance does not keep you trapped to being poor. Again NZ does not have poverty because of the many state assisted ways individuals and families can improve their standard of living – education being one of them.

        Grant Robertson’s poster boy Ben Hana chose a life of poverty by exiling himself from state assistance.

        • Colonial Viper 11.3.1.1

          indiana once experienced poverty than became a class traitor a la Bennett.

        • McFlock 11.3.1.2

          Yep. Damned parents would prefer their kids die five times quicker than if they got a well-paying job. /sarc
          And most beneficiaries are only short term beneficiaries, but great use of the “immigrant takeaway owner or taxi driver” stereotype. Really underlines your perspective.

  11. randal 12

    I agree that there is poverty in Godzone but what really underlies it is the poverty of spirit and the meanness that is put out by the tory parvenus and manques and their unquenchable desire to lord it over the unfortunates.
    and what is worse when you get the nincompoops who say nothing can be done because that is what some defunct philosopher or economist said 200 years ago.
    that is patently untrue but it suits the tories to have an underclass to bash up just for fun and to do the most menial of tasks that our society requires for the ease of the haves.

  12. RedLogix 13

    I agree that there is poverty in Godzone but what really underlies it is the poverty of spirit and the meanness that is put out by the tory parvenus and manques and their unquenchable desire to lord it over the unfortunates.

    Ummm.. yes precisely. Poverty of values, snobbery, and that big fat pallid streak of narrow-minded bigotry that runs through the under-belly of this nation. That’s it all right.

  13. Drongo 14

    Of course child poverty is something we must do our darnedest to eradicate, but there’s a risk that by describing poverty solely in these terms we leave behind those with no children. Labour’s already written off one group with WFF: those without a particular level of employment, but now we’re risking doing the same thing to people who don’t have children, many of whom face many other difficulties such as disability. That’ll mean a double-blow to those who’re both without children or employment – the new undeserving poor. What a great gauge of things that is? Never mind Key and his filthy money-grubbing mates – Labour’s got a lot to answer to.

    • “Yet insanely, the government has undermined family form by equalizing marriage alongside trending alternatives that leave children wanting, i.e. sole parenting, de facto partnering and civil unions. Disclaimer #2: Successful people derive from broken homes too, but they’re the exception, not the norm. And all power and respect to parents doing it on their own.” – http://richielewis.com/no-such-thing-as-child-poverty/

      What unmitigated, simplistic, prejudiced, rubbish.

    • Drongo 15.2

      Think you might have to read it first, Ant.

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    Last week people queued at the doors of the Auckland City Mission. They are people that are living without enough income to afford the basics let alone the extras we as a society have come to expect at Christmas. Extras...
    The Daily Blog
  • The only people who believed National’s surplus illusion were voters
    Sigh – the sleepy hobbits of muddle Nu Zilind are pretty easy to con aren’t they? National’s surplus was always a joke that would never happen, but in every single focus group, voters believed by overwhelming numbers that National were...
    The Daily Blog
  • Key’s crocodile tears over dirty politics
    John Key: Bloggers ‘not big part of my day’ Prime Minister John Key says bloggers are not a “big part of his day” but he lives in a world where he can’t ignore them. Speaking on TVNZ’s Breakfast programme today,...
    The Daily Blog
  • Why we are in inequality denial and climate change denial
        We are a country in denial over our inequality and climate change. Both issues have the same thread that runs through them. 30 years of neoliberalism has generated its own cultural narratives and myths. We have been taught that...
    The Daily Blog
  • This weeks Waatea news column – Why proclaiming Key as the Politician of ...
      This weeks Waatea news column – Why proclaiming Key as the Politician of the Year is ethically bankrupt...
    The Daily Blog
  • Britomart violence raises questions over rail staff safety
    Media Release: Rail and Maritime Transport Union   Britomart violence raises questions over rail staff safety   The Rail and Maritime Transport Union is raising serious questions over the safety of the staff on Auckland’s train network after violent incidents on...
    The Daily Blog
  • Australia stares down Siege – National Party politicise tragedy
    The Sydney siege has finished, from the reports that are breaking the gunman, Man Haron Monis is dead and one of the hostages has also been killed. The Australian Police seem to have acted incredibly professionally and the real Australian...
    The Daily Blog
  • The termination of the Internet Mana alliance
    Last week the Mana Movement and Internet Party wrote to the Electoral Commission to cancel the registration of the Internet-Mana political party. It was a decision which brought the arrangement between the parties to a natural end after failing to...
    The Daily Blog
  • Peace breaks out between Greens and Labour
    Finally some good news for the Left. Peace has broken out between the Greens and Labour. One of the greatest barriers to a real relationship between the Greens and Labour has been the uncompromising arrogance of the Labour Party Caucus...
    The Daily Blog
  • Little keeps it stupid, simple
    Labour MP drops euthanasia billA bill which would legalise voluntary euthanasia has been dropped by Labour MP Iain Lees-Galloway at the request of his leader Andrew Little. Mr Lees-Galloway had been canvassing support for his End of Life Choice Bill...
    The Daily Blog
  • Dear Ministry for Social Development,
    Dear Ministry for Social Development, I realise you probably already know this, but just a wee reminder of REALITY. You know – the reality of the vast majority of us who aren’t making ends meet and are struggling to live...
    The Daily Blog
  • Social Policy still in the dark ages when it comes to relationships
    Two years ago I became aware of the work of two very able barristers who defend low income women accused of relationship fraud. CPAG then began collecting cases and stories of horrendous misery and victimisation. Then penny was slow to...
    The Daily Blog
  • The truth about inequality
      The truth about inequality...
    The Daily Blog
  • Rather Than Sending Troops To Iraq … Brownlee May Wish To Consider Better...
    There’s something a little unsettling going on at the moment. Ok, many somethings. Of particular concern is the fact that right now, New Zealand troops are training at Waiouru for deployment to Iraq – and, assumedly, the ongoing war against ISIS. Brownlee,...
    The Daily Blog
  • West Papua’s Saralana Declaration most vital unity development for 52 yea...
    Newly elected spokesman for the unified West Papuan movement Benny Wenda is treated to a chiefly welcome at the opening ceremony of the “unity” meeting in Port Vila. Photo: © Ben Bohane/wakaphotos.com David Robie also blogs at Café Pacific. A...
    The Daily Blog
  • Helen says it all
    Helen says it all...
    The Daily Blog
  • When Fran O’Sullivan, John Armstrong and Cameron Slater are singing Andre...
    The mainstream media of NZ will never allow a Labour leader who threatens the bastions of neoliberalism from ever taking power. David Cunliffe found that out. So when the mainstream media establishment from Fran O’Sullivan to John Armstrong to even...
    The Daily Blog
  • Wisdom’s Mirror: Can Grant Robertson Slay the Neoliberal Gorgon?
    HOW TO ELIMINATE one’s rival without getting one’s hands dirty? It’s a problem with a prodigious political pedigree. King David’s lust for Bathsheba drove him to order Uriah, her unfortunate husband, placed in the front line of battle – where...
    The Daily Blog
  • GUEST BLOG: Miriam Pierard – Sweet Sixteen and able to vote?
    The level of voter participation in elections is an indication of the health of a democracy. Declining turnout across the democratic world, particularly among young people, has led to questions about the legitimacy of our governing institutions. It is time...
    The Daily Blog
  • Public Equity and Progressive Politics
    We heard from the OECD on Wednesday morning (10 Dec) [Focus on Inequality and Growth] that inequality suppresses economic growth. (Here are Radio New Zealand’s morning reports on this.) This is hardly a surprise to many economists and non-economists alike. The key point in...
    The Daily Blog
  • Analysis: Final Across The Ditch Bulletin for 2014 – Lorde Help Us!
    Analysis (Text & Audio): Across The Ditch – Selwyn Manning & Peter Godfrey Headline: Final Across The Ditch Bulletin for 2014 – Lorde Help Us! 5AA’s Peter Godfrey and Selwyn Manning.FiveAA’s Peter Godfrey and MIL’s Selwyn Manning present their last...
    The Daily Blog
  • Sharing intelligence with CIA torturers
    New Zealand’s spy agencies have long presented intelligence sharing with their US counterparts as mutually beneficial and benign. That stance has always lacked credibility and is now its impossible to justify. The just-released US Senate Intelligence Committee report shows that...
    The Daily Blog
  • Labour votes for Surveillance State. NZ First Opposes!
    A few weeks before the election, the New Zealand Labour Party decided to cash in on simmering popular discontent with the state of the surveillance state that National’s set up. Never mind their own previous and well-publicized brushes with egregious state-surveillance … they wanted people to know that...
    The Daily Blog
  • Economic ideology destroys us all
    The OECD’s latest report says “The biggest factor for the impact of inequality on growth is the gap between lower income households and the rest of the population. The negative effect is not just for the poorest income decile but...
    The Daily Blog
  • 3 simple words for the Labour Party
    I have 3 very simple words for all those Labour Party apologists who are trying to rinse Labour clean here. Get. A. Warrant. You can all try and spin this any way you want, but Labour voted for 24 hour...
    The Daily Blog
  • 2014 – Year of the angry white knuckle
    I knew Internet/MANA would have to fight National, ACT, Conservative Party, United Future, Maori Party and the mainstream media. I didn’t think they would also have to fight Labour, the Greens and NZ First as well. Apparently feeding hungry kids in...
    The Daily Blog
  • Chris Rock on cop shootings
    Chris Rock on cop shootings...
    The Daily Blog
  • Bank Lending: Restrictions and Favourites
    An important story in 2014 has been the Reserve Bank’s ‘loan-to-value ratio’ restrictions, which have made it extremely hard for first-time house buyers to get sufficient finance to buy a house. Corran Dann in TVNZ’s  Q+A (7 Dec) suggested that...
    The Daily Blog
  • This weeks Waatea news column – How should Waitangi Tribunal ruling on S...
      This weeks Waatea news column - How should  Waitangi Tribunal ruling on Sovereignty be implemented?...
    The Daily Blog
  • Labour sell us out on warrantless surveillance
    Isn’t it depressing that Labour are selling us out by voting for warrantless spying by an agency caught out smearing them? Last night Labour do what they always do, over compensate on Security issues. So terrified are Labour at being...
    The Daily Blog
  • This Is The Headline For Test Post
    This Is The Headline For Test Post Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. Ut eget neque facilisis sapien laoreet volutpat. Nulla vel nisl nec purus interdum tincidunt. Phasellus orci sapien, vestibulum et pulvinar non, pellentesque eget leo. Sed...
    The Daily Blog
  • Question Time in Parliament Today – National Party MPs cheer graph that s...
    This is the graph the National Party were shown by Russel Norman in Parliament today and they all cheered…     …they cheered?!?!?!? That’s beyond denial, that’s just gleefully suicidal....
    The Daily Blog
  • NZ Pastor Prays For Homosexual Author To Kill Himself
    By Jayden Jameson and Jessie Hume If we ever needed a reminder that homophobia is alive and kicking in New Zealand we have Pastor Logan Robertson from the Westcity Baptist Church. The Westcity Baptist ministry could apparently be described as New...
    The Daily Blog
  • Political Journalism in the South-Pacific – a new direction for NZ influe...
    Last week, the incredible Pacific Journalism Review celebrated 20 years of promoting and supporting and standing up for Journalism in the South-Pacific. The conference at AUT featured journalists from around the pacific who have battled and fought and been punished...
    The Daily Blog
  • Antarctica minus the ice – welcome to your future
    Antarctica minus the ice – welcome to your future...
    The Daily Blog
  • REAL LIFE GUEST BLOG: Lou – 15 shifts in 12 months……permanently homel...
    This is Key’s real life – other NZers aren’t so privileged    15 shifts in 12 months……permanently homeless since May. I went to the Salvation Army yesterday on advice for emergency housing as my temporary accomodation had turned volatile. Just...
    The Daily Blog
  • Labour Party Members should be furious at reviews findings
    Let’s see The Standard use this image Well, well, well… Labour’s election review: What went wrongLabour’s review panel has reported its findings back about the party’s election campaign and the reasons for the low 25 per cent result, identifying problems...
    The Daily Blog
  • Judith Collins joins the Sunday Star Times and cements the Rights dominance...
    “I am not a Monster”, hissed Judith Collins   I don’t read the Sunday Star Times, so had no idea that they had just decided to make Judith Collins of all people a new columnist. Her appointment cements into place...
    The Daily Blog
  • Grey Lynn Festival – very Grey – Art in the Dark – very Dark
    The battle of Helm’s Deep from the Two Towers would have had better OSH conditions than Art in the Dark   Grey Lynn Festival – 2 stars So the Grey Lynn Festival happened last weekend. It’s a day where the good liberal...
    The Daily Blog
  • ‘Stalking’ Ede
      Tau Henare accuses TV3 of stalkingA former National MP has accused TV3 of stalking after one of its journalists attempted to question a former Beehive spin doctor. Today’s episode of The Nation featured an unsuccessful attempt to question former...
    The Daily Blog
  • Taxpayer Union, the NZ Herald and Len Brown’s secret hidden love den
    I love the way the NZ Herald introduced the discredited Taxpayer Union in their bullshit story about Len Brown’s secret hidden love den… ‘Secret room’ spending shows need for recall electionsA lobby group says revelations Auckland Council spent $30,000 on...
    The Daily Blog
  • Eric Garner killed by NYPD original footage
    The horror of a ultra militarised and racist American Police Force who can kill with impunity. Obama claims cameras on every office would stop this type of brutality, these cops knew they were being filmed and killed him anyway. In...
    The Daily Blog
  • Unjust to imprison us for crimes we haven’t yet committed
    Once again National and Labour have succumbed to the “law and order” brigade enabling the passage of a Bill imprisoning people for crimes they might commit in the future. The Public Safety (Public Protection Orders) Bill allows the Court to...
    The Daily Blog
  • Disabled parking spaces are for the disabled
    Many districts across the country have been changing the mobility parking spots to the vivid blue colour scheme as opposed to the simple yellow sign. This has been done as an attempt to make the designated spots more visible to...
    The Daily Blog
  • New online guide to NZ’s environment goes live
    The Environment Foundation* has launched a new web-based guide to the management of New Zealand’s natural environment....
    Scoop politics
  • Ban On Alcohol Advertising Just One Step
    Family First NZ says that a proposed ban on alcohol advertising at sports events as recommended by a ministerial forum is an important move, but will not solve the binge drinking and alcohol abuse issue on its own....
    Scoop politics
  • CLANZ scholarship winner to examine legal services to Crown
    Wellington in-house lawyer Tania Warburton is the inaugural winner of the research scholarship established by the Corporate Lawyers Association of New Zealand (CLANZ)....
    Scoop politics
  • Joint Australasian operation dismantles drug syndicate
    The Joint Organised Crime Task Force (JOCTF), leading a multi-agency team, has smashed a multi-million dollar international organised crime network following raids across Melbourne this morning....
    Scoop politics
  • Video: Meet Mark Gilbert, U.S. Ambassador-Designate to NZ
    Join us in welcoming Ambassador-Designate Mark Gilbert and his wife Nancy. They are arriving in New Zealand shortly and wanted to introduce themselves. Watch this video to learn about his connections with Aotearoa, and why he thinks the partnership between...
    Scoop politics
  • MIA Welcomes Review Findings
    The MIA welcomes the findings of the Health Quality & Safety Commission into child and youth mortality arising from the use of motorcycles, quads and other agricultural vehicles....
    Scoop politics
  • Quads Bikes Not for Under 16s
    Safekids Aotearoa strongly supports recommendations made in a report released today highlighting the dangers posed by quad bikes when ridden or controlled by children who are under 16 years of age....
    Scoop politics
  • Inquiry on Parliament’s legislative response to emergencies
    Public submissions are being invited on Regulations Review Committee’s Inquiry into Parliament’s legislative response to future national emergencies. The closing date for submissions is Sunday, 1 March 2015....
    Scoop politics
  • Switch off on the beach NOT at level crossings
    KiwiRail and TrackSAFE NZ have launched a new summer rail safety campaign with a message to motorists to stay focused and always look for trains at level crossings over the holidays. December is known as the month for family, festivity...
    Scoop politics
  • Report on child and youth deaths from vehicle use
    Quad bike and other off-road vehicle accidents second largest cause of child recreational deaths...
    Scoop politics
  • Inspector-General accepts apology for leak of report
    The Inspector-General of Intelligence and Security, Cheryl Gwyn, has accepted an unreserved apology from Hon Phil Goff MP for disclosing some of the contents of her recent Report into the Release of Information by the NZSIS in July and August...
    Scoop politics
  • Santa’s naughty list shows NZPork in trouble
    Santa has provided animal advocacy organisation SAFE with an early copy of this year’s naughty list , as it prominently features many animal-abusing industries and businesses, with NZPork topping the list....
    Scoop politics
  • WWI veterans had persisting higher risk of early death
    New research on the impact of the First World War on participating New Zealand soldiers shows they typically lost around eight years of life and had an increased risk of early death in the post-war period....
    Scoop politics
  • Rainbow Wellington urges further change from Blood Service
    This week the New Zealand Blood Service (NZBS) announced the implementation of the agreed changes to blood donor deferral. For men who have sex with men (MSM) this primarily involves a reduction of the deferral period from five years to...
    Scoop politics
  • New Zealand Government signals reversal of fortune
    The Government’s robust $372 million forecast surplus from Budget 2014 will turn into a $572 million deficit, according to the 2015 Half-Yearly Economic and Fiscal Update and the Budget Policy Statement. Imports are cheaper and good export prices...
    Scoop politics
  • Time for Jobs that Count in the Meat Industry
    The NZ Meat Workers Union will launch a new national campaign to highlight job insecurity in the Meat Industry this afternoon in Palmerston North....
    Scoop politics
  • Protest at killing of schoolboys – Vigil 17/12/14
    A peaceful vigil will be held in Downtown Square opposite Britomart station – cnr of Queen and Customs St from 11-45 am: Wednesday 17 December 2014....
    Scoop politics
  • Social housing provider opens development in Johnsonvillle
    Social housing provider, Accessible Properties, will be opening eight new social housing units in a new housing development in Johnsonville tomorrow....
    Scoop politics
  • NCWNZ Wins Court Case
    ComVoices welcomes and celebrates the news that the National Council of Women of New Zealand (NCWNZ) has won its High Court case against Inland Revenue and the Charities Registration Board....
    Scoop politics
  • Cut Taxes + Cut Waste = Surplus
    Responding to the Treasury's Half Year Fiscal and Economic Update, Taxpayers’ Union Executive Director, Jordan Williams, says:...
    Scoop politics
  • Cuts in public services likely fromBudget Policy Statement
    The horizon for workers looks gloomy with the release today of the Budget Policy statement. “Continuing real cuts in Government funding of public services are inevitable as a result of today’s Budget Policy Statement. The policy ignores the social,...
    Scoop politics
  • Half Year Economic and Fiscal Update 2014
    The Half Year Economic and Fiscal Update (HYEFU) 2014 provides the Treasury's latest economic forecasts and the forecast financial statements of the Government, including the implications of Government financial decisions....
    Scoop politics
  • Half Year Economic and Fiscal Update 2014
    The Half Year Economic and Fiscal Update (HYEFU) 2014 provides the Treasury's latest economic forecasts and the forecast financial statements of the Government, including the implications of Government financial decisions....
    Scoop politics
  • Chief Ombudsman launches major review of OIA practices
    The Chief Ombudsman, Dame Beverley Wakem, has today begun a wide ranging review of Official Information Act (OIA) practices in the public sector....
    Scoop politics
  • The Tasman Sea got a little smaller this morning
    “Our hearts and minds are with the people of Sydney: the Tasman Sea got a little smaller this morning,” said Race Relations Commissioner Dame Susan Devoy....
    Scoop politics
  • A safety message for the festive season from Housing NZ
    Batteries may be required for some of the best toys under the tree this year, but they are just as essential to enjoying the greatest gift of all, says Housing New Zealand General Manager of Property Services, Marcus Bosch. “Smoke...
    Scoop politics
  • Charity Wins in the High Court
    The National Council of Women of New Zealand (NCWNZ) is delighted that the High Court has found in its favour in its case against Inland Revenue and the Charities Registration Board....
    Scoop politics
  • Government cutting back health services to dangle tax cuts
    The health service is already too stretched, and cutting further into New Zealanders’ health services to fund tax cuts is irresponsible, the CTU said today. Leaked cabinet committee papers have revealed District Health Boards need an additional $440 million...
    Scoop politics
  • Christian Network calls for prayers and understanding
    New Zealand Christian Network director Glyn Carpenter is calling for people to pray and exercise understanding over the Sydney hostage incident....
    Scoop politics
  • Labour congratulated on withdrawing bill
    Euthanasia-Free NZ congratulates Labour leader Andrew Little and MP Iain Lees-Galloway for resisting sponsorship of the ex-Maryan Street voluntary euthanasia bill....
    Scoop politics
  • Commissioner very pleased with results of predator campaign
    Parliamentary Commissioner for the Environment Dr Jan Wright has congratulated the Department of Conservation on the initial results of its major campaign to tackle a predator plague this year....
    Scoop politics
  • Largest ever control campaign knocks back predators
    The Department of Conservation’s largest ever aerial 1080 campaign to combat this year’s rat and stoat plague has successfully knocked down predator populations in key target areas....
    Scoop politics
  • Brazil introduces 10-year validity, NZ overdue
    Brazil has just joined a long list of nations who have moved from 5-year to 10-year biometric passports....
    Scoop politics
  • National lead down after Little takes Labour leadership
    Today’s New Zealand Roy Morgan Poll shows National 46% (down 3.5% in a month). Support for Key’s Coalition partners is higher with the Maori Party 2% (up 1%), Act NZ 1.5% (up 1%) although United Future is 0% (unchanged)....
    Scoop politics
  • Part V of Te Urewera Report Released
    On 15 December 2014, the Waitangi Tribunal released in pre-publication form the fifth part of its report on Te Urewera claims. This part deals with Treaty of Waitangi claims in respect of Lake Waikaremoana, lodged by Tuhoe, Ngāti Ruapani, Ngāti...
    Scoop politics
  • C17 Fantasy Not for New Zealand
    New Zealand First is stunned by news that the New Zealand Defence Force has enquired about buying the $400 million C17 Globemaster III....
    Scoop politics
  • MFAT Spends $9 Million on Four Day Conference
    New Zealand taxpayers forked out $9 million to pay for a recent four-day UN conference in Samoa that included hiring the luxury P&O Pacific Jewel cruise liner. New Zealand covered the accommodation and operating costs of September’s Small Island...
    Scoop politics
  • State Services Commission Staff Highest Paid in Govt Sector
    The average salary for staff at the State Services Commission is higher than at any other government department, according to figures released by the Taxpayers’ Union. This morning’s Dominion Post reported the Commission staff earn an average of more...
    Scoop politics
  • EPA 1080 annual report released
    The Environmental Protection Authority (EPA) has released its seventh annual report on the aerial use of 1080. Findings are again consistent with previous years. The 1080 regime is working as intended with the benefits of using 1080 being seen while...
    Scoop politics
  • Bruce Jesson Awards
    • The Senior Journalism Award of $4000 for a proposed work of "critical, informed, analytical and creative journalism or writing that will contribute to public debate in NZ on an important issue or issues" was awarded to Max Rashbrooke for...
    Scoop politics
  • More money for your Christmas break
    You've spent hours planning your Christmas break and months saving for your holiday but have you thought about saving on your energy bills while you are away from home?...
    Scoop politics
  • Dunedin rally after Anglican organisation suspends 27 staff
    27 staff working for Anglican Family Care (AFC) in Dunedin, Alexandra and Balclutha have been suspended without pay just ten days before Christmas. The move will have significant impacts on AFC’s services, which include caregiver support, home visits...
    Scoop politics
  • Labour’s lack of support for voluntary euthanasia
    The majority of New Zealanders will be very disappointed that Andrew Little has directed his opposition Labour Party to withdraw support for a law change to allow terminally ill patients to end their lives with dignity in the loving presence...
    Scoop politics
  • Nominations close soon for Te Hiku council seat
    Time is running out for those keen to contest the Northland Regional Council Te Hiku seat left vacant by the death of Councillor Dennis Bowman. Independent contractor Election Services, which is handling the by-election for the regional council, says...
    Scoop politics
  • One week left for Mayoral nominations
    With one week left for prospective Mayoral candidates to come forward, five nominations have been received. Nominations are due to close on 22 December at 12 noon....
    Scoop politics
  • State Housing Tenant Fights HNZC on Legality of Eviction
    Housing New Zealand tenant Ioela (Niki) Rauti took HNZ to the tenancy tribunal a month ago to fight against continued harassment by HNZ and to challenge the lawfulness of her eviction....
    Scoop politics
  • Farmers group congratulates success of Ruataniwha Dam appeal
    The Organic Dairy and Pastoral Group, which represents organic livestock farmers, is writing to the Forest and Bird Protection Society, Fish & Game and the Environmental Defence Society to congratulate them on the successful outcome of their High Court...
    Scoop politics
  • Taxpayers’ Union Annual Review Released<
    The Taxpayers’ Union has released its annual review, covering the first 12 months of operations....
    Scoop politics
  • Offshore mining appeal withdrawn
    The withdrawal of the High Court appeal by Trans Tasman Resources is not unexpected, according to the Environmental Defence Society....
    Scoop politics
  • Seabed mining company drops appeal
    A “victory for common sense” was Kiwis Against Seabed Mining’s reaction today to Trans Tasman Resources’ news that it will drop its attempt to reverse the EPA’s rejection of its seabed mining application....
    Scoop politics
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